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How Businesses Can Work With Contemporary Artists: A Guide for Beginners

Art is an essential part of our culture and society. It can inspire us, challenge us, and help us to see the world in new ways. Businesses can also benefit from working with contemporary artists. Art can help to create a more vibrant and inviting work environment, attract and retain customers, and enhance a company's brand image.

If you're a business owner who has never worked with a contemporary artist before, don't worry! Here are a few tips to get you started:

  1. Define your goals. What do you hope to achieve by working with an artist? Do you want to create a more inspiring work environment? Attract new customers? Enhance your brand image? Once you know your goals, you can start to think about what type of art and artist would be a good fit for your business.

  2. Do your research. There are many talented contemporary artists working today. You can find artists through online galleries, art fairs, and social media. Once you find a few artists whose work you like, take some time to learn more about them and their process.

  3. Reach out to artists. Once you've found a few artists whose work you're interested in, contact them directly. Let them know about your business and your goals for the project. Be clear about your budget and timeline.

  4. Be open to collaboration. The best collaborations between businesses and artists are based on mutual respect and open communication. Be open to the artist's ideas and feedback, and be willing to compromise.

  5. Promote the collaboration. Once you have a finished artwork, be sure to promote it! Share it on your website and social media channels, and invite your customers and employees to come and see it. You can also host an event to celebrate the collaboration. Pass any public copy to the artist first to check, artists like businesses want to be sure that the work is talked about in the right way.

A man standing in front of inflatable sculptures
Mega Bunny & Friends installed at Spill festival, Cornhill Ipswitch. Photo David Severn

Here are a few specific examples of how businesses can work with contemporary artists:

  • Commission a custom artwork for your office or lobby. This is a great way to create a unique and inspiring work environment for your employees and customers.

  • Sponsor an art show or event. This is a great way to support local artists and engage with your community.

  • Partner with an artist to create a limited-edition product or line of products. This is a great way to add a unique and creative twist to your products and appeal to new customers.

  • Hire an artist to create a mural or other public art project for your business. This is a great way to enhance your brand image and give back to the community.

  • Work with an artist to have artwork temporarily sited at your business (It doesn't always have to be a long term permanent display)

Working with a contemporary artist can be a rewarding experience for both businesses and artists. By following the tips above, you can create a successful collaboration that will benefit everyone involved.

Additional tips for businesses:

  • If you're not sure where to start, consider asking regional galleries support. They often know interesting artists personally. Arts advisors can help you to find artists who are a good fit for your business and budget, and they can also manage the project on your behalf.

  • Don't be afraid to experiment. There are many different types of contemporary art, and multiple ways of experiencing artwork (e.g could a performance, sound artist, or an art installation work?)

  • Artist fees suggested by A-N are around £300 a day for an experienced artist, and the overall budget would depend

on the work, the type of art and artist. For example, I'm always looking to do something new with each project, that I've not done before, so including artist fees and production budget would start from about £6,000 upwards depending on the scope of the project.

  • Timescales - Many artists are managing multiple projects in a year, and so ideally 9-16 months prior to the project going live is optimum.

  • Working with a contemporary artist is a great opportunity to learn about art and support the arts community.

If you want to chat about making art for businesses feel free to send me an email

Four Scoops of Fun, Installed at

A sculpture installed in a business setting
Four Scoops Of Fun 2022 Installed at True Story, Nottingham

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